With coal-based power having its own liabilities coupled with recurring shortage,experts once again harped on the need for an alternative source of energy like solar power.
Thermal power is considered to be cheap,but if the costs of rehabilitation for developing coal mines as well as the health and environmental hazards are taken into account then the situation changes completely, said S P Gon Chaudhury,Managing Director,West Bengal Green Energy Development Corporation Limited (WBGEDCL). He was speaking on the second day of the energy summit organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce in the city.
Coal-based power with all its cost of rehabilitation,resettlement,land reclamation as well as environmental costs are expected to be falling out of favour. And with newer technology coming into the picture the cost of solar production is also likely to come down. While solar power cost is Rs 15 per unit,the cost of thermal power is Rs 3.5 per unit.
Chaudhury,however,felt that solar power was perhaps the best bet for meeting future energy requirements.
Around 50,000 MW of thermal power is planned to be installed during the Eleventh Plan period. The net target for the period is 78,000 MW.
India has a potential of 1.5 lakh MW of hydro power,out of which the North East would be generating 58,000 MW. We have to develop this 1.5 lakh MW of hydro power in India by 2025 and we are working towards it, said Jaideep Singh Bawa,director,Central Electricity Authority,Ministry of Power.